Learn About Strokes

What is a Stroke?

Each year, more than half a million Americans suffer from a stroke – the third leading cause of death in the U.S., and the leading cause of serious long-term disability, according to the American Heart Association.

A stroke, or "brain attack," occurs when the blood supply is cut off from part of the brain, depriving the brain of its supply of oxygen and nutrients. When this happens for even a few minutes, the brain begins to die.

Physician looks at scan to help determine stroke

There are two types of strokes — ischemic and hemorrhagic.

  • Ischemic Strokes — Brain arteries become blocked and prevent blood from nourishing the brain.
  • Hemorrhagic Strokes — Brain arteries rupture from damage caused by high blood pressure and other risk factors or an aneurysm (an abnormal out-pouching of a blood vessel). This causes blood to flood the brain, creating pressure that leads to brain-cell death.

Strokes can also occur in young patients, requiring highly specialized care available through Union Hospital's affiliation with Cleveland Clinic's dedicated pediatric stroke program for children from birth to age 18.

Each year, approximately 795,000 people suffer a stroke. About 600,000 of these are first attacks, and 185,000 are recurrent attacks.

On average, someone in the United States has a stroke every 40 seconds.

Stroke is the leading cause of death in the US. Each month, 15 to 20 Tuscarawas County residents have a stroke. Act FAST to get them treatment as quickly as possible.

Patients who arrive at the emergency room within three hours of experiencing first signs of symptoms tend to be healthier three months after a stroke than those whose care is delayed.

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